Ivan the Great Bell Tower of the Moscow Kremlin

at the Cathedral Square of the Kremlin bell tower of St. John of the Ladder, also known as Ivan the Great Bell.The Kremlin and all its buildings are connected into a single unit in the heart of the capital.In 2008, this architectural monument celebrated 500 years.

Church of St. John of the Ladder

Ivan the Great Bell Tower of the Moscow Kremlin has several centuries of history, and begins its countdown to 1329.That year was founded the Church of St. John of the Ladder in the reign of Ivan Kalita.The temple was established as a bell tower, so the space allowed more harmonious sound of bells, placed on the upper levels of the church.The excavations, which were carried out in the XIX-XX centuries, pointed out that the architecture of the building reminds of ancient Armenian churches.Outside the church had eight sides and the inner section of the church had a cruciform shape.On the eastern side of the apse located in a semi-circular, and the second floor housed the arch bells.The temple existed before th

e start of the XVI century.

Bonovskaya belfry

In 1505 during the reign of Grand Prince Vasily III, the old church was dismantled.At the same place it was built a new church designed by masters from Italy, known as Bon Fryazin.The temple was built in memory of Tsar Ivan III.Construction was carried out over three years.In 1508, two-tiered bell tower was ready.Tradition architecture, typical of Italy at the time, greatly influenced the architecture of the temple.That is why the building had several bells, which were located separately from each other.The church also received another name - "Bonovskaya bell tower."An impressive string of various sizes joined the temples of the Kremlin in a single ensemble.It was the second stone church in Moscow.Throne of St. John of the Ladder was launched on the first floor of the building.

In 1532 the bell tower on the north side of the bell tower was built the temple of the Ascension of the project of another architect from Italy - Petroc Minor.It was designed for a solid bell weighing 1,000 pounds, called "evangelist."Completion of construction of the belfry in 1543 was carried out local craftsmen.Immediately the temple was located on the third floor, which led to a special staircase.On the majestic belfry housed a drum with a dome.

Assumption belfry

In 1600, the harvest throughout the country has been scanty, the people were starving.Boris Godunov, to save his people, decided to carry out a major overhaul of Bonovskoy bell tower, which performs arrived from all suburbs of the people.He planned to finish it one tier, and again to create the Church of St. John the Great on the ground floor.Therefore, the whole structure was wearing a different name - Ivan the Great Bell.Attached floor was cylindrical in shape and height of the bell tower was increased to 82 meters.It has become the biggest structure of that era.To reach the upper level, it would pass through the 329 steps.Under the dome of the temple was carved an inscription in gold letters, which indicates the date of its construction and the names of the kings who ruled at the time (Boris Godunov and his son).On the area around the bell tower, which bore the name of Ivanovo, read out all the decrees of the king.Since then, an expression of "scream all Ivanovo."

In the second half of the XVII century bell tower was completely rebuilt.During the reign of Mikhail Romanov and his father Filaret's patriarchate, in 1624, on the north side of the building was erected Filaretova project Bazhen Ogurtsova.The structure was white stone pyramid tent, covered with tiles.Ivan the Great Bell Tower of the Moscow Kremlin given a new name - the Assumption Belfry.

Belfry during World War

Great Patriotic War of 1812 detrimental impact on the architecture of the monument.The soldiers of the French army withdrew gilded cross from the tower and tried to blow it up.But only damaged the Filaret Annex and belfry, located to the north.When the war ended, the master D. Gilardi fully restored bell tower exploded elements, change some proportions and the overall style of the building.In the years 1895-1897 the Ivan the Great Bell Tower in Moscow was restored S. Rodionov.


At the height of the Ivan the Great bell tower rises 82 meters.From the highest point of the structure can be considered a neighborhood of the capital for 30 miles around.Despite the relatively simple architecture bell tower building different grandeur and beauty.The proportions of all its elements are selected in such a way that creates a very harmonious architectural ensemble.Thanks to experienced masters, had a hand in its creation, the Ivan the Great Bell Tower is a striking historical monument in Moscow.

bells in the bell tower

In total, the building has 34 bells, and in the annexe and Filaret Belfry remained only 3 of them.In ancient times, the bell hung on beams of wood, but in the XIX-XX centuries, they were replaced by iron.All the bells were made by masters of casting affairs of different epochs.

The oldest of them - "The Bear", weighing more than 7 tons, was cast in 1501.The most severe and visible bell is the "Dormition" ("Tsar Bell") with a weight of 65 tons, which was cast in 1819 and Rusinov Zavyalov masters of old material.The second largest bell is the "Howler", weighing 32 tons, created by Anton Chekhov in 1622.It is associated with a tragic episode in 1855 when mounting the bell broke and flying 5 stories, he fell to the ground, killing more than one person.The third largest bell is "Sunday" ("Semisotenny"), weighing 13 tons.It was created in 1704 I. Motorin and located on the Filaret Annex.

bell tower contains a total of 18 bells.On the ground floor there are 6 of them, among which is the oldest on average - 9. Upper level has 3 bells, the history of which is unknown.


bell tower on the first level of the Assumption Belfry is a museum hall where works of art.

placed in the bell museum of the history of the Kremlin in Moscow, where he exhibited models of ancient white stone buildings of the XIV century, presented a panorama of Moscow and other original items.The walls of the bell tower decorated with projections of various monuments.The observation deck offers great views of the Kremlin and the surrounding area.For guests there is a special audio guide that helps tourists from different countries to learn the historical facts of this architectural monument is the Ivan the Great Bell Tower, description and interesting details.

Architectural today

Today, Ivan the Great Bell - is the current museum, which receives thousands of tourists from around the world every day.The museum displays ancient art.Through the use of modern technology it is possible to recreate the appearance of not surviving to our times monuments.

Throughout the existence of the Soviet Union, the bell tower has been closed to visitors.Again, in the church bells began ringing in 1992, the day of Holy Easter.And from that time all the church services are held in the Kremlin cathedrals under the chimes.

Ivan the Great Bell in the Kremlin - a valuable architectural monument, which has a rich and interesting history.Everyone who came to Moscow, can enjoy the view of this unique structure.